Notre Dame girls’ soccer coach Jim Schermerhorn couldn’t quite name exactly what made the difference for his Lady Irish in Wednesday evening’s Class A/AA quarterfinal.
All he knows for sure is that their season ended with a 2-1 loss to White House in the state tournament at Chattanooga Christian.
“I don’t know what it was,” Schermerhorn said. “We just got off to a slow start. We looked nervous, and we made some young mistakes. I’m not blaming it on youth, but giving away that first 20 minutes and having to fight your way back from that, that’s tough.”
White House (14-6-1) took control of the match in the opening minutes, and its work paid off with a goal in the 15th. Kate Carney connected on a pass from Alicia Callis, and the Lady Blue Devils maintained their 1-0 advantage through the opening minutes of the second half.
The Lady Irish started out strong in the second period, however, and equalized when Blair Barker finished a ball from Emma Higgins in the 44th minute. Schermerhorn thought that score would become a turning point for his team, but Notre Dame struggled to find scoring opportunities the rest of the way.
“At that point I thought, ‘This is us now’,” Schermerhorn said. “We got the goal back, and at 1-1, it was up to us. I just don’t know if we battled as good as we should have.”
Then, with 22:10 remaining on the , White House’s Kendall Morrison sent a hard shot from Kaleigh Tuttle into the back of the net. The 2-1 deficit proved to be too much for the Lady Irish to overcome, and they finished their season at 11-3-5.
“Their midfield did a good job possessing, and we had a tough time matching up with that, but I definitely don’t think we were outmatched,” Schermerhorn said. “It was just one of those games where some things just didn’t go our way. You hate to see that at the state tournament, but we did have a good year, even if it didn’t end the way we wanted it to.”
(E-mail Jaime Barrett at email@example.com)